Learning for life: Bakers’ asthma

Life Long Learning and Continuing Professional Development is the processes
by which professionals, such as nurses, develop and improve their practice

There are many ways to address CPD: formally, through attending courses,
study days and workshops; or informally, through private study and reflection.
Reading articles in professional journals is a good way of keeping up-to-date
with what is going on in the field of practice, but reflecting and identifying
what you have learnt is not always easy. These questions are designed to help
you to identify what you have learnt from studying this article. They will also
help you to clarify what you can apply to practice, what you did not understand
and what you need to explore further.

1. Bakers with occupational asthma are usually antigen positive to:

a) Wheat and oats
b) Oats and barley
c) Wheat and flour
d) Cornflower and wheat

2. The effect of sensitisers may be made more potent by the presence of:

a) Irritants
b) Pollen
c) Flowers
d) Perfumes

3. In bakers which of the following can trigger chest symptoms?

a) Flower and grass pollen
b) Flour dust, moulds and fungi
c) Air conditioning
d) Icing sugar dust

4. Continuous monitoring should take place as part of a surveillance
programme that is:

a) Weekly
b) Monthly
c) Quarterly
d) Annually

5. After starting in the bakery the peak risk time for sensitivity to
develop is:

a) 4-6 weeks
b) 4-6 months
c) 6-12 months
d) 6-18 months

6. When taking a history there are the three main areas to investigate.
Which one is NOT one of the main areas?

a) When did symptoms start?
b) How much sick leave has the employee taken?
c) What is the timing and pattern of the symptoms?
d) What happens during sleep?

7. Which of the following is NOT recommended under HSE guidance:

a) Pre-employment screening
b) Periodic assessment
c) Lung function testing
d) Regular blood tests

8. What does SWORD stand for?

a) Surveillance of Work-related and Occupational Respiratory Disease
b) Statistics of Work-related and Occupational Respiratory Disease
c) Surveillance of Work-related and Occupationally Related Disease
d) Statistics of Work-related and Occupational-related Disease

9. COSHH Regulations under Stage 1 recommend reducing dust exposure to:

a) <2mg/m3
b) <5mg/m3
c) <10mg/m3
d) <15mg/m3

10. Why were all referrals for blood tests made to the Department of
Occupational and Environmental Medicine at the Royal Brompton and Harefield NHS
Trust? It was:

a) The only trust that did these tests
b) The nearest to the bakery
c) To ensure continuity
d) Part of a research campaign


It may be worth updating and revising your knowledge of immunology.
Carrying out a literature search on the Internet may also be useful. The
website http://omni.ac.uk and search for immunology is quite good. 2. a), 3.
b), 4. d).
Revise your knowledge of COSHH and the principles of prevention,
5. d), 6. b), 7. d), 8. a), 9. c), 10. c). Now update and revise
your knowledge of occupational asthma. If you do not have any specific
sensitisers in your place of work it may be useful to spend some time
discussing occupational asthma with a colleague who has, or even asking to
visit their place of work to see how it is handled.

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